The Stanly News and Press (Albemarle, NC)

State & National News

July 23, 2013

N.C. Ecosystem Enhancement Program celebrates a decade of conserving and restoring streams and wetlands

Tuesday, July 23, 2013 — RALEIGH – July marks 10 years of operation for the N.C. Ecosystem Enhancement Program, a state Department of Environment and Natural Resources initiative that restores and protects wetlands and waterways for future generations while offsetting unavoidable environmental impacts from economic development.


On July 22, 2003, DENR, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and the N.C. Department of Transportation signed a three-party memorandum of agreement that established the program. Through more than 580 projects in North Carolina, EEP has conserved, restored or enhanced more than 640 miles of streams, nearly 30,000 acres of wetlands and about 700 acres of buffers.


“The Ecosystem Enhancement Program’s core mission is a public-private partnership to allow economic development projects to continue while enhancing the environment,” said John E. Skvarla, secretary of the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

“When executing that mission, the program has been very successful at outsourcing taxpayer risk while advancing public priorities.”


EEP offers four mitigation programs to help private and public entities comply with state and federal compensatory mitigation for streams, wetlands, riparian buffers and nutrient offsets. EEP uses receipts from the programs to restore streams and wetlands where the need is greatest by working with state and local partners, including willing landowners. The N.C. Department of Transportation and other developers voluntarily use EEP to move projects forward in a timely and affordable manner.


From its inception, the main goal of the program has been to ensure that state transportation projects are not delayed due to environmental mitigation requirements. EEP is considered a national model for stream and wetlands mitigation, earning recognition in 2005 and 2007 as one of the top 50 new innovative government programs in the nation by Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, and a prestigious award in 2005 for local watershed planning from the National Association of Environmental Professionals. EEP also was named Natural Resources Agency of the Year in the 2006 Governor’s Conservation Achievement Awards. EEP ( continues to achieve its mission to restore and protect North Carolina’s natural resources for future generations while supporting responsible economic development.


“EEP has racked up some impressive numbers in its first decade,” said Michael Ellison, the program’s director. “But the most important is that zero DOT projects have faced delays because of a lack of mitigation since 2003. EEP has helped to move forward over $14 billion in transportation projects.”



·         1.57 million lbs. of nutrients removed

·         More than 4,000 In-Lieu Fee Customers Served

·         100 percent customer-satisfaction rate

·         Nearly $500 million in contract awards outsourced to the private sector

·         50,100-plus acres of natural areas preserved for future generations

·         And zero NCDOT projects delayed because of lack of mitigation since 2003, helping to move forward over $14 billion in transportation projects


Text Only
State & National News
  • linda-ronstadt.jpg Obama had crush on First Lady of Rock

    Linda Ronstadt remained composed as she walked up to claim her National Medal of Arts at a White House ceremony Monday afternoon.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Brother sues W.Va. senator over business loan

    FAIRMONT, W. Va. - U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin's brother claims he's owed $1.7 million that he loaned to keep a family carpet out of bankruptcy in the 1980s.

    July 28, 2014

  • CATS-DOGS281.jpg Where cats are more popular than dogs in the U.S.-and all over the world

    We all know there are only two types of people in the world: cat people and dog people. But data from market research firm Euromonitor suggest that these differences extend beyond individual preferences and to the realm of geopolitics: it turns out there are cat countries and dog countries, too.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • WORLD NEWS: Fast food comes to standstill in China

    BEIJING - The shortage of meat is the result of China's latest food scandal, in which a Shanghai supplier allegedly tackled the problem of expired meat by putting it in new packaging and shipping it to fast-food restaurants around the country

    July 28, 2014

  • Facebook continues moneymaking trend

    WASHINGTON - Facebook seems to have figured out - for now at least - the holy grail for all media right now: how to make money selling mobile ads.

    July 25, 2014

  • Arizona's prolonged lethal injection is fourth in U.S. this year

    NEW YORK - Arizona's execution of double-murderer Joseph Wood marked the fourth time this year that a state failed to dispatch a convict efficiently, according to the Constitution Project, a bipartisan legal group.

    July 25, 2014

  • N.C. Energy Policy Council Long Range Energy Generation and Renewable Energy Committee to meet

    RALEIGH – The North Carolina Energy Policy Council’s Long Range Energy Generation and Renewable Energy Committee will meet via conference call at 9 a.m. July 31.

    July 24, 2014

  • N.C. State University Turfgrass Field Day set for Aug. 13

    N.C. State University’s annual Turfgrass Field Day will be held in Raleigh at the Lake Wheeler Turfgrass Research Lab, Aug. 13, 8:30 a.m. - 2 p.m. One of the largest events of its kind in the country, the field day offers the industry and general public a chance to view the Turfgrass Program’s ongoing research trials and speak directly with N.C. State faculty and staff.

    July 24, 2014

  • NCSU Study: Urban Heat Boosts Some Pest Populations 200-Fold, Killing Red Maples

                New research from North Carolina State University shows that urban “heat islands” are slowly killing red maples in the southeastern United States. One factor is that researchers have found warmer temperatures increase the number of young produced by the gloomy scale insect – a significant tree pest – by 300 percent, which in turn leads to 200 times more adult gloomy scales on urban trees.

    July 23, 2014

  • An oncologist uses scorpion venom to locate cancer cells

    Olson, a pediatric oncologist and research scientist in Seattle, has developed a compound he calls Tumor Paint. When injected into a cancer patient, it seems to light up all the malignant cells so surgeons can easily locate and excise them.

    July 22, 2014

House Ads
Seasonal Content